From Endurance to Dressage
Last summer, I had Izzy's hocks injected. I just reread that piece and found it quite interesting. I had forgotten all of the technical aspects of the procedure.
Since I've been down that road already, I didn't feel the need to arm myself with a bunch of advice from Dr. Google before Friday afternoon's appointment. I also didn't ask nearly so many questions this time around. Even so, I did have a few.
Dr. Gonzalez, pictured second from the right, is Bakersfield Vet Hospital's newest doctor. He's been practicing for a few years now, and he was BVH's tech for a long time before that. Since Dr. Tolley had gone on vacation, I had asked if Dr. Gonzalez could do the hock injections instead of waiting two weeks for Dr. Tolley's return to work.
To my surprise, Dr. Gonzalez explained that he hasn't had enough practice with the procedure to do it on a horse like Izzy. In other words, one who isn't going to stand still even while tranquilized. Dr. Gonzalez has been practicing on cadavers, but since the cadaver is laying down, the angle of the injection is different as is the space between the joints.
Dr. Gonzalez went on to say that family members and friends have let him practice on their own horses, especially the older guys. It was also interesting to hear that he can practice without actually injecting the real medications. Instead, he can use a saline solution without harming the joint. Who knew?
For this year's round of injections, Dr. Tolley changed the formula a bit. Last summer he used Depo-medrol (an anti-inflammatory), Amikacin (an antibiotic), and Adequan (an osteoarthritis drug). This summer, he switched out the Adequan in favor of Hyalovet (hyaluronic acid). I didn't realize the formula was different from last year, so I didn't get a chance to ask him why.
Now that I know that sore hocks show up in Izzy as a sore back and resistance to work, I am going to be keeping an eye open for changes in Izzy's attitude come late spring. Maybe if I catch it sooner, he won't get as sore.
As big a deal as getting hocks injected can be, it wasn't the only complicated procedure Izzy had on Friday. Believe it or not, there was more! Check back tomorrow for the other one.
About the Writer and Rider
I am a lifelong rider.
I began endurance riding in 1996 where I ultimately completed five, one-day 100 mile races, the 200-mile Death Valley Encounter, and numerous other 50, 65, and 75 mile races. I began showing dressage in 2010.
Welcome to my dressage journey.
About Speedy G
Speedy went from endurance horse to dressage horse. After helping me earn a USDF Bronze medal in the summer of 2020, he is now semi-retired. Speedy is a 2004, 15'1 hand, purebred Arabian gelding. His Arabian Horse Registry name is G Ima Starr FA.
Izzy was started as a four-year old and then spent the next 18 months in pasture growing up. I bought him as a six-year old, and together, we are showing at the lower levels. He is a 2008, 16'3 hand warmblood gelding. His Rheinland Pfalz-saar International (RPSI) name is Imperioso.
National Rider Awards
State Rider Awards
State Horse Awards
CDS Sapphire Rider Award
Third Level: 63.514%
Third Level: 62.105%
2023 Show Season
(r) Ride-a-Test Clinic
2023 Show Schedule
*** SCEC 10/15-16/22
2022 Completed …
(*) Tehachapi 5/22/22
(*) Tehachapi 7/24/22
(***) Tehachapi 8/28/22
2023 Qualifying Scores
Regional Adult Amateur Competition (RAAC)
Qualifying Training Level
3 Scores/2 Judges/60%:
Score 1: 62.115%